Leicestershire and Rutland Cricket has announced, for the first time, that it will be supporting the delivery of The Prince’s Trust xl cricket programme to three xl clubs within Leicestershire schools.

The Prince’s Trust xl clubs help young people aged 14-16 who are facing difficulties at school, including those at risk of exclusion. They meet for at least three hours a week during school time and, guided by an xl club Adviser, club members are encouraged to work together to achieve goals relating to their education, training and future lives.

xl cricket is a nine week programme, run nationally with various County Cricket Boards. Leicestershire and Rutland Cricket are supporting the programme by delivering cricket sessions at school to help engage young people and to develop vital skills such as confidence, teamwork, communication, leadership and motivation.

The culmination of these cricket sessions will be a trip to Lord’s for a national tournament played between all xl clubs involved with the programme later this year.

On completion of the programme; LRC hopes to provide cricket related progression opportunities for the young people to allow them to continue enjoying the game by playing, volunteering or officiating.

Sport offers so many opportunities for young people to learn new skills and build confidence which they can use to make a positive change to their lives. We are delighted to be able to partner with The Prince’s Trust and share the benefits of cricket amongst the local community.

Ged McDougall, Cricket Development Manager

Emma Chambers, an xl Adviser said: “In the classroom the students didn’t engage well with each other, would tend to have arguments or name call, but the moment they went out onto the field it was like they were a completely different group. Working together, helping each other out and offering support with the technical issues they had with bowling and batting.

“Personally, the highlight of the programme was returning back to school after the day at Lord’s and looking at my students and noticing how much of a difference xl cricket has made with their social interaction.”

The xl cricket programme begins on the 16th May 2011.  For more information on The Prince’s Trust or xl clubs please contact rebecca.pike@princes-trust.org.uk